Burnham Boiler Problem

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Old 01-20-14, 07:19 PM
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Burnham Boiler Problem

Hoping for some advice.

I have a Burnham V-1-96T boiler (photos below), that is having intermittent issues.

I had the unit cleaned and serviced about a month ago (annual cleaning). After the tech left the unit failed to start the next morning when the thermostat was calling for heat. I went downstairs and hit the red reset button and everything fired up and worked fine.

Contacted the tech and he came back to check everything, fine tuned a few things and said it should be ok.

About 3 days later same thing happened again, fired right up after hitting reset button. Tech came back again and put a different nozzle on.

It originally had a 75/60/S3, he changed to a 65/60/W, then went back to the 75 after the 3rd visit.

Ran fine for about a month, then failed to start again last night. Red reset started it right up. Has been running fine for the past 24 hours.

Notes.

Each time this happens, there is a strong oil smell

Tech suggested having the chimney swept (we purchased home end of 2011, no idea when it was done last)


Could the dirty chimney cause the boiler to fail to fire? Do you think the transformer might be going?

Any advice is appreciated.

Thanks,
Scott


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Old 01-21-14, 05:02 AM
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What does the boil spec. plate call for per nozzle ? Did he use the Beckett electrode setting gauge ? Did he do a co2 test and give you a copy and what are they ? The oil filter should be mounted on the burner not on oil tank to prevent dirt from oil line getting into burner. Did he clean filter in burner oil pump?
 
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Old 01-21-14, 07:13 AM
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Did he use the Beckett electrode setting gauge ?
Being that it's a CARLIN burner, would that be the correct tool to use?
 
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Old 01-21-14, 03:51 PM
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As trooper said a Beckett gage is no use on a Carlin burner. The smell of oil though tells me you have an ignition problem. It could be your transformer, when they begin to fail they act erradic, or it could be your electrodes.
They may have hairline cracks or the tips could be worn or just not adjusted right.

It could also be a nozzle problem, wiih not being the right angle when firing getting the electrode tips wet with oil and not allowing the tips to ignite. Burners are made to fire certain nozzles. Although you do have some wiggle room you also have limits.

If your boiler & burner came as a package there may be info on the burner what they want for a nozzle.

That oil smell is not from the chimney. It is unburned oil from a late ignition.
At this point I wouldn't worry about your filter or pump screen or a blockage. You're getting oil, it's just not igniting properly and sometimes not in the time allowed by the control, probably a 45 second time or it goes off on safety.

A word of caution. If it goes off again and it doesn't light when you hit the reset DO NOT KEEP RESETTING IT. Try it maybe once or twice at the most.

Every time you reset it oil is delivered to the chamber and when it doesn't light it absorbs into the fiebox and it gets saturated then when it fires all that unburned oil ignites and if it's bad enough can cause a chimney fire or worse.

Have your tech concentrate on the ignition system.
 
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Old 01-21-14, 06:32 PM
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Thanks for your reply Spott,

I'm trying to do this the most economical way. Do you think it makes sense to install a new transformer first since I could do this myself and if that doesn't fix the issue then place a service call with the tech to have the other parts of the ignition system checked?

I've attached a photo of the transformer. Does the 0910 indicate that this transfomer was from 2010? Do they usually fail that early?

Thanks again,
Scott

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Old 01-21-14, 07:34 PM
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MT,
I'm not sure about the date, but to answer your question there's no rhyme or reason why or when they fail. My first one lasted 22 yrs, the replacement lasted 2 and the current one has been in for 6 yrs.
Without seeing the work the tech did on setting up the electrode assembly it's hard to say but with what you've told us about the tech I would say it wouldn't hurt to try it but don't throw your old one away.

Telling you a dirty chimney causes oil smell makes me very suspect of his skills, plus he doesn't seem to be getting very far.

So yes, in your case I wouldn't hesitate to get the transformer. It's fairly inexpensive and an easy fix.

In case you've never done one before the wires will be the same color and it doesn't mater which one goes to hot or common. Obviously, shut the power off. The transformers are 17000 volts and they can hurt you.

Good Luck,
 
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Old 01-21-14, 07:43 PM
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If the electrodes are set too far apart it will shorten the life of the transformer .
 
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